In school we are taught that Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves. This statement is reinforced continuously throughout our education, beginning from the time we are in elementary school to when we are in high school. However, it’s never really expounded upon when taught. The discussion never goes further than ‘Abraham Lincoln enacted the Emancipation Proclamation and thus freed the slaves’, but is still able to instill the implication that he did so out of his own moral values and that life for ex-slaves was better for it. The truth of the matter is actually the complete opposite. The emancipation proclamation was a purely political decision that instead of truly freeing the slaves, only served to keep them bound.
When Abraham Lincoln was elected, seven states starting with South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas seceded from the Union and formed Confederate States of America (P.397), and soon after, four more states including: Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina, and Tennessee joined them (P.400). The Confederate States were mainly slave states that perceived Lincoln as a threat to the southern institution and its foundation; slavery. Although Lincoln had an anti-slavery position, which means that he was opposed the idea that slavery spreads into new territories, not an abolitionist, the Confederate States dreaded that they might lose their power in their territories (P.397). President Lincoln rejected the right of
During the Abraham Lincoln’s short time as president, he managed not only to save a nation deeply divided and at war with itself, but to solidify the United States of America as a nation dedicated to the progress of civil rights. Years after his death, he was awarded the title of ‘The Great Emancipator.’ In this paper, I will examine many different aspects of Lincoln’s presidency in order to come to a conclusion: whether this title bestowed unto Lincoln was deserved, or not. In order to fully understand Lincoln, it is necessary to understand the motives that drove this man to action. While some of his intentions may not have been for the welfare of slaves, but for the preservation of the Union,
“I have never had a feeling politically that did not spring from the sentiments embodied in the Declaration of Independence.” Abraham Lincoln admired the declaration of independence and its founders. The Declaration of Independence was formed by the thirteen States of the confederacy. Represented by American liberty from each state. Twelve of these states where holders of slave. Abraham Lincoln legacy was for all men and women to be created equally. No matter what color or race you are, you have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It also states America’s freedom from Great Britain. What most people get wrong is that The Declaration of Independence wasn't signed on July 4, 1776. This was the date that congress Adopted
From Guezlo’s introduction of “Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation: The end of Slavery in America”, he acknowledged that this is one of the representative of President Lincoln’s writings in the history demonstrating his dedication to free “four million black slaves”. At the end of Guezlo’s introduction, he proposed the idea of how Lincoln would be a white friend to African American due to the power, the position he had that can help him to start deliverance. The author stated, “It would be special pleading to claim that Lincoln was in the end the most perfect friend black Americans have ever had. But it would also be the cheapest and most ignorant of skepticisms to deny that he was the most significant” (359). The president was described as a manumitter who broadens the destinies for the Negroes. Moreover, this is also an opportunity to solve the happening concerns between masters, slaves, and many others involving folks. Additionally, in Guezlo’s pieces of evidence, he suggested that there was always the thought of releasing African American slaves in Lincoln’s mind even from the day when he first had the presidential oath. The president implied the “hatred” he had on slavery, of how it might affect the world, “I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery itself …” (354). Lincoln insisted that having slavery is equal to the violation of the Declaration of Independence as well as the belief of the Republicans of how this issue would influence the whole society.
What did Abraham Lincoln do and think regarding slavery during the Civil War? In Abraham's First Inaugural Address he states "I do but quote from one of those speeches when I declare that I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so."" (Pg 53-54) Lincoln did not want the South to be afraid of his Republican Presidency either. That was why he made these statements at his Inauguration about slavery. Lincoln also talks about leaving the returning of fugitive slave clause alone, and keeping it in the Constitution. He
Abraham Lincoln's main goal of the civil war was not to free the slaves, but rather to preserve the Union. As said in a statement in 1858, he is not, and has never been in favor of bringing about racial reform. This is shown greatly in the Emancipation Proclamation which he later signed in 1862. This proclamation was not created as a victory for slaves, and anti-slave protesters, but as a form of propaganda to get more support from northern republicans. The proclamation did not free slaves in all states, and the United States government had no authority or power to enforce it in the states it effected.
Abraham Lincoln and Slavery Many Americans believe that Abraham Lincoln was the “Great Emancipator,” the sole individual who ended slavery, and the man who epitomizes freedom. In his brief presidential term, Lincoln dealt with an unstable nation, with the South seceding from the country and in brink of leaving permanently. The differing ideologies between
President Lincoln was always determined to abolish slavery but not for a moral reason. During the civil war, Abraham Lincoln demonstrated his opposing view on slavery through his ideas. As the civil war progressed, Lincoln didn’t show moral reasons for the fact that he wanted to abolish slavery, instead he used antislavery to preserve the union, he states that he never wanted to free all slaves, and he publicly announced his real concern to preserve the union. To end the war and free slaves, Lincoln publically shows how he uses military reasons to achieve both.
The Civil War may have ended, yet that did not seem to halt the blatant racism that continued to linger throughout the country during the Reconstruction period. The Thirteenth Amendment was a great step forward for this country, unfortunately not every southern individual felt this way. Freed slaves faced a multitude of problems ahead; even if people believed in abolishing slavery, that did not necessarily mean they agreed with freed people possessing the same civil rights as themselves. Abolishing slavery was the first step, but dealing with the social, economic, and political racism was to be dealt with in the years to come.
Slavery in America began during the early 17th century and followed with the abolitionist movement in the late 1800’s. This movement created a continental divide between southern and northern states. In the south, there are the Southern Democrats who supported the idea of slavery and believed that the institution was necessary for the survival of the south. Southern Democrats also argued that the North turned their back on the “real” America. While the northern states were composed of Republicans, such as Abraham Lincoln, whose efforts to exterminate slavery eventually caused the absorption of anti-slavery Whigs and most of the Know-Nothing party. In the years that followed, slavery fueled the fire that started the Civil War.
Based on the supplementary readings, I believe that the Civil War and Reconstruction failed to produce equality and freedom to the former slaves in America. Although these events are a major development in the process of liberating African Americans from slavery and dehumanization, many obstacles still exist in which the black community suffered from discrimination and lack of basic rights as a black man in the late 1800s. For example, black soldiers were recruited into the Civil War due to shortage of manpower and “receive the sum of ten dollars per month…[while]..the regiment would...be allowed the three”(Gooding, "We Feel as Though Our Country Spurned Us"). This shows prejudice to the African Americans despite their efforts. Even though
Slavery caused many violent events in the 17 and 1800’s. The South and the North could not agree with slavery; the North was anti-slavery and the South were pro-slavery. The south considered slaves to be their own personal property and the slaves were not allowed to be counted as a citizen of the United States; they were only considered to be counted as 3/5 of a person. Because slave owners were so harsh to their slaves, the slaves generated many slave rebellions and also conducted the Under Ground Railroad which took them to the north to be free if they could make it through it. The North and South also tried to solve the disagreement of slavery in the new Missouri by creating the Missouri Compromise, which stated that North of the 36-degree latitude line would be free of slavery, and South of the 30-degree latitude line would be slave areas. When more states started to come along, the disagreement worsened. During the popular sovereignty voting for each state for free or slave, southerners crossed the border to alter the votes and argued that slaves are their personal property and if they choose to move to one of the new states that is a free state, they should be able to bring their slaves with them. Throughout the years slavery continued to be a major argument, so Abraham Lincoln decided he needed to do something about it without breaking up the union; and that meant issuing an Emancipation Proclamation for Confederate States.
So, who freed the slaves? Lincoln said, “my paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and it is not either to save or destroy slavery, If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that.” (Lincoln, letter to Horace Greeley). Lincoln didn’t have the commitment to end slavery. He didn’t even saw African American as socially or politically equal to white people, since he lived in a racist society. In one of his debates with Steven Douglas, Lincoln said “And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race”.